On Tuesday I planned to drive to a remote work site to do some work on the computers there, its a long drive about 85-90 miles round trip all on highways. I made the trip once before in MINI E #304 and was looking forward to driving it on a long trip again. But when I went out to the Garage I found #304 unplugged and with only a 70% charge, Ops I'd forgotten to plug it in last night.
I figured I had an hour to spare so I plugged it in and waited, hoping that the 40A charger would be quick, but when I checked back it was only at 80% not nearly enough charge for the trip. So I took the Gas burner, my Z3 which I hadnt driven in a month. On the way I kept thinking the 40A charger should have charged the car more, an I wondered if I had the cars Amperage set correctly. Sure enough when I got back and checked it the car was set to 12A not 32A, Ops again.
It must have been set to 12A for a week and I never noticed, 12A at 240v is faster then at 110V but not as fast as at 32A. While forgetting to plug in the car is a problem I'm guessing all electric car owners will have now and then, I dont think setting the correct amperage on the car should be as tricky as it is with the MINI E. First I think the car could tell you the Amperage its drawing while charging on the display, as it is you just dont know unless you click through a bunch of menues maybe 10 or so short and long clicks on the selecter switch, a very clunky system. But more useful would be if the plug you connected the car to told the car what amperage to use, it seems to me a very simple thing to have a RFID chip in the plug that the car could read. While we are on the subject of the plugs, I dont like the current ones MINI chose to use for this project, they have tiny wires inside of them that look like they could easily brake from heavy use, and I cant see this as a good plug to use in a public place like a Mall as there is no locking mechanism, I can just imagine kids going down a line of EV's plugged in at a charging site and unplugging them all.